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Pema Khandu, Turncoat Who Switched Parties And Retained Arunachal CM’s Chair, To Take Oath A Th

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Pema Khandu is set to become the chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh for the third term in a row. He was unanimously elected as the Bharatiya Janata party (BJP) Legislature Party Leader at a meeting. After being elected unanimously, Khandu accompanied by BJP leader Tarun Chugh and several legislators called Governor Lt Gen (Retd) K T Parnaik at Raj Bhawan in Itanagar and staked claim to form the government.

The governor invited Khandu and his ministers for swearing in. “State BJP president Biyuram Wahge proposed the name of Khandu as the chief minister which was supported by all the 46 party’s MLAs,” Chugh told reporters at Raj Bhawan in Itanagar, as quoted by PTI.

Khandu, along with his new council of ministers, will take the oath and secrecy of office at Dorjee Khandu Convention Hall in Itanagar on Thursday, which is likely to be attended by union Home Minister Amit Shah and Nadda, along with several chief ministers of northeastern states, among others.

The saffron party returned to power in Arunachal Pradesh for the third time in a row, winning 46 seats in the 60-member assembly. 

Born on August 21, 1979, Khandu hails from a prominent political family in Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang district. He is the son of former Arunachal CM Dorjee Khandu, who died in a helicopter crash in 2011. Khandu completed his early education in Tawang and shifted to New Delhi to pursue higher education. He attended Delhi University’s Hindu College. 

Known for his enthusiasm for sports and music, Khandu is recognised for his strategic acumen which played a key role in bringing the saffron party to power for the first time in the northeastern state bordering China in 2016.

Pema Khandu: Political Career

Khandu’s political career began following his father’s demise. In 2011, he was elected unopposed to the Arunachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly from the Mukto constituency. The seat was previously held by his father.

In 2016, Pema Khandu’s career took a major turn after he was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, succeeding Nabam Tuki as a Congress candidate. He succeeded Nabam Tuki. Prior to his stint as the CM, Khandu was a part of the Arunachal Pradesh government under Tuki’s administration. He served as the Cabinet Minister for Water Resource Development and Tourism.

Defection To Peoples Party Of Arunachal

In September 2016, Khandu led a group of Congress legislators to defect to a regional party, the People’s Party of Arunachal (PPA). He went on to become the CM under the PPA banner for the second time.

In December 2016, Pema Khandu and his group rejoined the BJP and strengthened his position as the Chief Minister under the leadership of the saffron party.



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